Sensibility and Organic Unity: Kant, Goethe, and the Plasticity of Cognition

Intellectual History Review 25 (3):311-326 (2015)
Dalia Nassar
University of Sydney
In this paper, I trace a ‘leading thread’ from Kant’s Critique of Judgment to Goethe that involves a shift from a conceptual framework, in which a priori concepts furnish necessity and thereby science, to a framework in which sensible experience plays a far more significant and determining role in the formation of knowledge. Although this shift was not enacted by Kant himself, his elaboration of organic unity or organisms paved the way for this transformation. By considering both the methodological difficulties that Kant encounters in his attempt to articulate the structure of organisms and Goethe’s response to these difficulties, my goal is to locate a specific trajectory in the history of nineteenth century philosophy, in which empirical experience and sensibility play a far more significant role than otherwise acknowledged.
Keywords Kant  Critique of Judgment  Sensibility  Goethe
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DOI 10.1080/17496977.2014.888612
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Kant's Transcendental Idealism.Henry E. Allison - 1988 - Yale University Press.
Gesammelte Schriften. Kant - 1912 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 73:105-106.

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